New Outdoor Furniture Designs offer
Flexible Style and Indoor Comfort
As homeowners continue to spend more time and money on their outdoor spaces, outdoor furniture manufacturers have come up with new designs and innovative products to meet their growing needs and style preferences. The latest trends in outdoor furniture and accessories focus on indoor comfort, design flexibility, and making better use of your outdoor living space. Here are the top 7 outdoor furniture trends you can expect to see this spring.
1. Stackable Patio Chairs
Lightweight stackable patio chairs and table sets offer versatile solutions for small yards: they can be repositioned to maximize space and accommodate guests during outdoor gatherings; then stacked and stored away when not in use.
The need for space-saving furniture comes from the reality that many homeowners are moving into smaller homes and “therefore tend to have less outdoor space,” says Gerald Shvartsman, CEO and owner of Source Outdoor, a high-end outdoor furniture manufacturer in Miami, Fla. According to a study by the National Association of Home Builders, the size of the average single-family home will have decreased by 10 percent by 2015.
In addition to smaller spaces, Shvartsman contributes the interest in stackable outdoor furniture to its easy portability. Many homeowners want to bring their furniture indoors during harsh storms or the winter months to help it last longer and protect it from the elements.
"A huge benefit or reason as to why stackable outdoor furniture is trending more and more is because consumers can save space in storage and have greater mobility to move their furniture when needed," says Shvartsman.
But don’t confuse stackable patio furniture with the outdated plastic white lawn chairs you probably have hiding out in the back of your garage. Today’s outdoor stackable furniture is crafted from durable, high-quality materials like weather-resistant aluminum and synthetic rattan and is designed with a modern style to look great in any setting.
The Circa Stackable Outdoor Dining Chair (pictured above) and the Fusion Stackable Chat Set (pictured at right) are two examples of the stylish new options in stackable outdoor furniture.
Photos courtesy of UpSpring PR on behalf of Source Outdoor
2. Outdoor Rugs
Outdoor rugs are a top trend this summer as the desire to bring the look and comfort of the indoors out remains in high demand among homeowners. Just like an interior rug, an outdoor rug can pull your entire outdoor space together, as well as define seating areas and add a warm and welcoming feel to your patio, porch, or deck.
Outdoor rugs are available in all shapes, sizes, colors and patterns to match any décor theme and can even extend the look of your home’s interior. Most outdoor rugs are made from polypropylene for water, mold, and mildew prevention and are treated to resist fading from UV exposure.
Photo courtesy of Whitecraft, Inc.; William Herren, Designer
3. Deep Seating Furniture
Deep seating outdoor furniture, which includes upholstered chairs, sofas, loveseats, chaise lounges, and ottomans, continues to grow in popularity. Like the cozy furnishings that make a living room the most relaxing place to gather inside the home, deep seating outdoor furniture features large, wide seating areas and soft, oversized cushions to create an equally enticing refuge outdoors.
Deep seating patio furniture comes in a variety of durable, weather-resistant materials, including synthetic wicker, cast aluminum, wrought iron, and wood. Design styles range from traditional to contemporary to country chic and can either extend the look of your interiors or create a new décor theme outdoors.
Modular deep seating sets are a popular choice because the sectional pieces can be moved around or grouped together to best fit the occasion or space. Source Outdoor’s Lucaya collection (pictured below) offers a range of 14 different pieces “so people can customize the look of their space, big or small,” says Shvartsman.
Above: Photos courtesy of UpSpring PR on behalf of Source Outdoor
Top Right: Photo courtesy of Pride Family Brands
4. Outdoor Fabrics
Outdoor furniture fabrics continue to improve in performance, design, and texture. Outdoor cushions made from acrylic, polyester, and olefin fabrics feel just as comfy and soft as their indoor counterparts and are resistant to water, stains, and fading from UV exposure so there’s no need to bring them inside after every use. Cleaning is also simple: just wipe them down with a mild soap and a little warm water.
Along with enhanced durability, outdoor fabrics are now being produced in wider ranges of colors, patterns, and prints and offer unlimited design possibilities for outdoor spaces. Everything from outdoor furniture cushions to patio umbrellas and awnings to accent pillows, outdoor curtains and rugs can be mixed and matched to add depth and personality to your space.
The latest design trends for 2013 call for out-of-the-ordinary combinations such as mixing contrasting prints such as stripes and floral and mingling bright vivid shades like poppy red and zesty yellow with neutrals like gray and tan.
The abundance and diversity in outdoor fabrics make it easier and more affordable to update the look of your outdoor space from one season to the next and as trends come and go.
Photo courtesy of Pride Family Brands
5. Multifunctional Pieces
With the rise of the “outdoor room,” backyards have become multipurpose spaces for dining, swimming, lounging, cooking, and entertaining. As such, outdoor furniture designers are now creating pieces that cater to a variety of needs and activities.
Dining or bar height firepit tables are one of the latest outdoor furniture offerings and provide the warmth and ambiance of a fit pit along with adequate space for dining and socializing. Many manufacturers produce a range of dining fire table sizes to accommodate any space and family, big or small.
A few companies have taken multifunctional furniture a step further with accessories like a Lazy Susan that fits over the fire pit section if extra table space is needed and a table top grill pan that allows you to cook food right at the table, creating an interactive dining experience.
Other multifunctional furniture trends include outdoor storage ottomans, benches, and chaise loungers that provide seating as well as a discreet place to stash furniture cushions, garden tools, or pool toys.
Pride Family Brands is one outdoor furniture manufacturer incorporating this trend into its product line. The company has designed a selection of woven aluminum outdoor storage units, including an oversized coffee table, end table, and an armoire/side board.
Photos courtesy of Pride Family Brands
6. Motion Seating
In keeping with the notion toward indoor comfort, motion seating such as swivel chairs, gliders, and rockers are making a bigger presence in outdoor furniture collections this year.
Though they’re not a new trend, outdoor rocking chairs, swivel seats, gliders, and swings are now being designed in a wider array of materials and styles, including deep-seating designs with plush cushions and contoured seats for maximum comfort and relaxation outdoors.
Photo courtesy of New River Casual Furniture;
Photography by Wayne Donelsen, Deanne & Wayne Co.
7. Transitional Style
Overall, the biggest trend in outdoor furniture this year is the move toward transitional design. A mix between classic and contemporary styles, transitional outdoor furniture blends the clean lines of modern furniture with the curves and comfort of traditional designs for a look that is simple, yet inviting.
The popularity of transitional style furniture stems from its design versatility: Transitional outdoor furniture can easily be mixed and matched with more modern or traditional pieces and works well in any backyard setting. Additionally, transitional style outdoor furniture affords homeowners the flexibility to revamp the look of their outdoor space from one design scheme to the next just by switching out the cushions and accessories.
Photo courtesy of Pride Family Brands
Learn which type of outdoor furniture is best for your climate and space in our Guide to Buying Outdoor Furniture >>